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KABOOM!!
June 11, 2006 8:00 AM   Subscribe

Record meteorite hits Norway. More pictures and information. (last two links in norwegian) No reports of injuries.
posted by pyramid termite (49 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
A meteorite of that size is a very rare event.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:10 AM on June 11, 2006


I wonder if military or civilian radar could have picked up such a possibily dense, fast object. One could approximate the location of impact, assuming it didn't explode midair.
posted by elpapacito at 8:18 AM on June 11, 2006


Sweet, what are the chances that someone actually got a picture of an event that only lasted a few seconds. I'll be very interested to see the impact zone.
posted by 517 at 8:24 AM on June 11, 2006


The astronomer believes the meteorite was a giant rock

Heh. That article is not very good.
posted by smackfu at 8:24 AM on June 11, 2006


I'm kinda surprised that we're all still here. Fast moving, mysterious objects + Norway have been problematic in the past, and apparently not much has changed.
posted by kimota at 8:24 AM on June 11, 2006


OH SWEET BABY JESUS IT IS WORMWOOD.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 8:29 AM on June 11, 2006


"...assuming it didn't explode midair."

They know it impacted because of seismic readings, from what I could gather from the links. By the way, only if it impacted was it a "meteorite". Meteors that don't reach the ground are much more common, because (obviously) they are much smaller.

"OH SWEET BABY JESUS IT IS WORMWOOD."

Heh. It was about 2 hours late, huh?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:32 AM on June 11, 2006


So what's the deal.. did they find the meteor/meteorite? I don't understand Norwegian.
posted by hodyoaten at 8:33 AM on June 11, 2006


In case anyone has read We Die Alone (the true story of a WWII escape) - the meteorite hit in roughly the same area where David Howarth met up with the Laplanders. (I was just checking an atlas a few hours ago at the same spot). It is a region characterized by spotty pine forests, high up on a plateau, inhabited in the winter (9+ months of the year) by mobile Laplanders and snow.
posted by stbalbach at 8:37 AM on June 11, 2006


Thats a big area, but if they can get enough eyewitness accounts and, ideally, a couple more pictures, it might well be possible to triangulate and find the meteorite. If it made even a smallish crater then techniques like LIDAR or high res. spectrometry might be able to pick it up, especially if there is a before/after series. Also, Norway is probably still studded with radar and they may have tracked it. But it would most likely be weeks, if at all, that they are able to find it, if big pieces even remain.
posted by Rumple at 9:00 AM on June 11, 2006


WØw, thåt is so åmazing! cool story! Can't wåit to see how big this sucker is.
posted by nickyskye at 9:07 AM on June 11, 2006


This is absolutely beautiful. Can't wait to see what the impact site looks like.
posted by EarBucket at 9:13 AM on June 11, 2006


Ack, just noticed that's a completely different meteor. Oh, well, I'm sure this one was pretty, too.
posted by EarBucket at 9:14 AM on June 11, 2006


*tries, fails to come up with way to humorously tie this into Norway's legal issues with iTunes and Apple's secretive Asteroid project*
posted by jbrjake at 9:38 AM on June 11, 2006


Earbucket writes: This is absolutely beautiful. Can't wait to see what the impact site looks like.

According to the article, the light from the meteorite in question was at least a thousand times stronger than that.
posted by klue at 10:01 AM on June 11, 2006


Good thing it wasn't an even bigger kaboom. Last night there was also a fireball seen across the upper Midwest. "about 30,000 tons of debris ...falls into the Earth's atmosphere a year".

The largest meteorite ever found.

The part of Norway, Reisadalen, where the meteorite landed.

What it might have looked like.


posted by nickyskye at 10:07 AM on June 11, 2006


Good thing this didn't happen over a city. Sounds like it was big enough to pack quite a whallop. One of these days it will happen over a major urban center - I suppose our first reaction will be to assume a terrorist nuke attack.
posted by slatternus at 10:10 AM on June 11, 2006




A Møøse once bit my sister.
posted by knave at 11:17 AM on June 11, 2006


C'mon, Norway, don't just sit there and take it. Fight back!

You know, sure as shit, some meteorite strikes here in the US, we'll damn well strike back. USA! USA!
posted by graventy at 11:39 AM on June 11, 2006


In Japanese but interesting to watch.

the narrator seems awfully cheerful about it, doesn't she? ...
posted by pyramid termite at 11:54 AM on June 11, 2006


from nickyskye's link ...

"He said that about 30,000 tons of debris that falls into the Earth's atmosphere a year. Makes me kind of wonder why I haven't been hit by one. But then he said that most of the debris is the size of a grain of sand. So, I quite possibly could have been it by space debris and just didn't notice it.

Even some of the larger pieces of debris never reach the surface of the Earth because its traveling so fast - about 25 times the speed of light - and the rock or metal is too weak."

now that is some damn fine science writing ...
posted by pyramid termite at 11:58 AM on June 11, 2006


WØw, thåt is so åmazing! cool story! Can't wåit to see how big this sucker is.

Đon't forget đey cán speak šomeŧiŋ else up đer too. Sápmelaččatgi doppe orrut! ;)
posted by taursir at 12:05 PM on June 11, 2006


I thought this thing was supposed to hit May 25th in the Atlantic?
posted by Mutant at 12:16 PM on June 11, 2006


"now that is some damn fine science writing ..."

Yeah. Wow. Sigh. She's not a science writer, just a small-town newspaper columnist, but still.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 12:18 PM on June 11, 2006


517:

Ok, that video was just damn sweet. If it weren't in Japanese, I'd FPP it.
posted by Bugbread at 12:37 PM on June 11, 2006


Đäŋg 517, Wåy čool video. Thánkš! I ågree wiŧh bugbreađ.

Sápmelaččatgi doppe orrut! ?
posted by nickyskye at 12:56 PM on June 11, 2006


ps, taursir, from your profile page, since you're up in that neck of the woods, where this meteorite landed, any more news about it? Interesting life you have.

Yeeha!



A Meteorite Hit My House!
posted by nickyskye at 1:16 PM on June 11, 2006


WØw, thåt is so åmazing! cool story! Can't wåit to see how big this sucker is.

Wi nøt trei a høliday in Sweden this yer?

See the løveli lakes

The wonderful telephøne system

And mani interesting furry animals

Including the majestic møøse
posted by deanc at 1:17 PM on June 11, 2006


Nickyskye's video also has an English translation in the sidebox:
The diameter of the meteorite is slightly bigger than the breadth of Honshu Japan. The collision point is located at the 3,000km south from Japan in the ocean. The velocity of the meteorite is 70,000km/h. But the meteorite is bigger than we can imagine, so that it appears much slower.

[snip]

...as a result, the Japanese Islands are crushed.

The splinter of the crushed rock easily exceeds the height of 1000Km. After exceeding the atmosphere it reaches space. Afterwards, the splinter of the rock falls again in surface of the earth.
Etcetera. Worth reading the sidebar before watching the video...
posted by five fresh fish at 2:08 PM on June 11, 2006


Thanks fff!
posted by nickyskye at 2:24 PM on June 11, 2006


What would be the effect on the earth's rotation and orbit of a strike like the one in the Japanese video? (and I couldn't find the translation....)
posted by Rumple at 2:46 PM on June 11, 2006


Rumple: The translation is on the right, where it says:
The story of the Earth of
4.6 billion years

地球大進化
46億年・人類への旅

隕石衝突シミュレーシ ョン
Meteorite collision simula The story of the Earth of
4.6 billion years

地球大進化
46億年・人類への旅

隕石衝突シミュレーシ ョン
Meteorite collision simula... (more)
Click on "more", and it will open up to reveal the translation.
posted by Bugbread at 2:51 PM on June 11, 2006


Oh, thanks bugbread. 'click on more' - must be Web 2.1 on or something.
posted by Rumple at 4:19 PM on June 11, 2006




Something I have always wondered: why are meteors smaller than meteorites? Wouldn't the other way around make more sense?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:31 PM on June 11, 2006


How can they not have found the impact site already? You'd think they would've had helicopters in the sky all over the area by now.
posted by nightchrome at 6:11 PM on June 11, 2006


The suffix -ite in this context refers (um, ironically) to geology, not smallness—though the geological usage probably relates to smallness in some sense ("piece of"?), as well. I'm just guessing.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:16 PM on June 11, 2006


Obviously viral marketing for the new Superman movie.
posted by mikepop at 8:05 PM on June 11, 2006


EB -- the suffix -ite probably is geological, but in the usage of "derived from" or "found at" -- as in Labradorite. Therefore, meteorite -- from a meteor.

From OED, suffix -ite, 2nd sense: b. Mineral. The systematic ending of the names of mineral species, comprising names of ancient origin in -{giacu}{tau}{eta}{fsigma}, as anthracite, hæmatite, ophite, selenite, or in -{gifrown}{tau}{iota}{fsigma}, as chlorite, hepatite, hyalite, and a vast number of modern names in which -ite is added to an element expressing colour, structure, physical characters or affinities, or to the name of a locality, discoverer, mineralogist, distinguished scientist, or other person whom the discoverer may have desired to commemorate. Examples are albite, azurite, melanite, dichroite, graphite, apatite, calcite, syenite, labradorite, leadhillite, humboldtite, wernerite, brewsterite, danaite, darwinite. Earlier names of minerals have in some cases been displaced by names in -ite, and some names with other endings as -ane, -in, etc. have been conformed to the -ite type. For names of rocks, Dana has suggested the differentiated ending -yte, founded on trachyte, as in aphanyte, dioryte, epidosyte, and the like; but this has not found universal acceptance. It is also used more widely in tektite, and hence in the names of tektites from different regions (as australite, indochinite).
posted by Rumple at 8:16 PM on June 11, 2006


an update - this poster on a webboard claims this article (in norwegian) has a photo of one of the impact sites and that it was nowhere as big as what some thought ... on the other hand i've read comments elsewhere that this looks like an older impact

beats me ... seems like the only news sorces are from norway on this
posted by pyramid termite at 9:05 PM on June 11, 2006


Rocks falling from the sky?

Yeah, right. Hoax.
posted by Smedleyman at 10:19 PM on June 11, 2006


Kirth said: Something I have always wondered: why are meteors smaller than meteorites? Wouldn't the other way around make more sense?

In case it wasn't figured out in the other two responses about geology, a meteor is a meteoroid that has entered the atmosphere. A meteorite is simply a meteor that survived the trip to the surface of the Earth. Larger meteors are the ones that end up becoming meteorites. Although they clarified where the -ite comes from, I hope this clears up the size difference issue. If I can type properly here.

Rumple said: What would be the effect on the earth's rotation and orbit of a strike like the one in the Japanese video?

The net effect on rotation and the final orbit very much have to do with where it strikes the Earth. I can't even begin to comprehend everything that would happen since this is a bit more complicated than billiards balls, but thinking about them can help to see how there are so many different possible scenarios as in glancing blows/straight on shots/impacts from a retrograde/prograde orbit.
posted by Phantomx at 11:37 PM on June 11, 2006


nickyskye: nah, the first I heard of it actually, was from Fark.

Sápmelaččatgi doppe orrut! 'The Sámi also live up there!', Northern Sámi. ;)
posted by taursir at 2:24 AM on June 12, 2006


Wait, reading the "more" translation from 517's link, it sounds like that was all an elaborate Star Wars joke.
I don't know if that's good or bad.
posted by NinjaTadpole at 2:35 AM on June 12, 2006


I just read the last part of the translation, and I realized they skipped the last minute or so of the narration, and the last two sentences of the translation are not only not said in the film, but completely opposite of what was actually said. After "The sea of 4000m in average depth has disappeared one month after the collision of the meteorite. ", what the narrator actually says is:
"This happened when the first microscopic organisms had evolved in the oceans. These microscopic organisms must have suffered considerable losses. (music brightens) The apparently placid and peaceful earth has actually experienced multiple impacts. And we, the organisms of the earth, have withstood these impacts and survived."
I read the rest of the translation, which seems fairly accurate (if grammatically quite problematic), but I haven't thoroughly checked it, so I don't know if it's got other similar problems.
posted by Bugbread at 5:05 AM on June 12, 2006


taursir, Thanks for the translation. :)

No idea why but as a kid I had a koltta, a navy blue Sami hat, which I loved and everybody else made fun of because of it's unusual shape.




Looks like this meteorite falling in Norway is still under investigation.
posted by nickyskye at 2:04 PM on June 12, 2006


I, for one, welcome our....etc., etc....

517, great video. Well done and absolutely terrifying. Though if a big one like that hit, it wouldn't take long for everything to be gone like that *snap*. Actually a much smaller one could wreak havoc that would spread out over a much longer time period, affecting the world economy, food supply, weather systems, etc.
posted by zardoz at 2:19 AM on June 13, 2006




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